There was a very interesting New York Times article last week that has been making the rounds amongst our leadership team. It's titled "What Colleges Want In An Applicant (Everything)". It details the many frustrations of parents and high achieving students as they try to navigate the college admissions process, especially considering how hard it is to discern what truly will help a high school senior stand out. Is it grades? Is it standardized tests or extra-curriculars? How about AP classes and community service projects? The article shows how opaque the process can be, and how varied it is from school to school.
As I promised in yesterday’s blog, today I will elaborate on the second aspect of Scott’s trip to China. Yesterday, he spoke at Beijing Academy about the importance of young people becoming more educated in 21st century skills (also called "non-cognitive skills). Beijin Academy is the leading new education reform focused school in all of China. Scott was not the only speaker featured at this incredible event. The list included Richard Elmore from Harvard University (a leading expert in education policy and research), Ron Beghetto from the University of Connecticut (considered by some to be the leading expert in the US on creativity), Yong Zhao (professor at the University of Oregon, and the world’s leading expert on education in China), and education thought leaders from the UK and Australia. As Scott said to me when we were chatting this morning “it was pretty surreal to share a stage with them”.